A problem that needs a solution
At the moment, 30%-40% of physician prescribed blood draws are not being fulfilled by patients. As these blood draws help to narrow the focus for the physician decisions, getting them is crucial towards closing important gaps in care. With the coronavirus continuing to rage on in several states, the path towards getting them done has become even more challenging with many individuals opting to forgo leaving the house in order to go to a lab and get blood work done.
This has left many hospital systems to wonder whether it would instead be possible to bring the laboratory experience to the patient.
Implementing the ‘Phlebotomist at Home’ workflow
Delivery implementations have been publicized as a major aspect of the gig economy. Just download the app, choose from a list of drivers or task workers from the list provided, and schedule them to come to your home as soon as possible or at a certain time. In the case of the ‘phlebotomist at home’ workflow, mphrX and Northwell designed a use case where it could finally be possible to bring valuable blood work to the patient.
Breaking a product down via personas
In order to go ahead and actually begin developing a product that would serve the market, it was important to first define the personas that would be using the application.
- Consumer: The patient that uses the application to schedule service requests via website or mobile iOS and Android operating systems.
- Phlebotomist: The service provider application which the phlebotomist uses to navigate to the patient’s address, look at order details, and mark whether or not the order has been fulfilled.
- Enablement portal: A portal that links patients and phlebotomists by managing appointments and whether the right phlebotomist has been appointed to the right customer.
Pricing for value
One of the more interesting aspects of LabFly is that it is priced to provide for family members. As one subscription gives customers access to three separate accounts, getting blood work done for the whole family is something that has not been seen on the market for other hospital systems.
Developing the application
LabFly was developed according to an auto basic assignment logic infrastructure. In this type of workflow:
- The patient creates an appointment for a phlebotomist working in a specific region
- The patient schedules a specific time for the appointment
- A phlebotomist can view assigned orders and decide whether to accept or decline the offer
This is the major workflow, however if an issue arises and a phlebotomist is not available for a visit, the declined order is sent to the enablement portal where a new user is assigned to the patient. While most patient care applications don’t need any kind of intervention, sometimes it can be necessary. In this case, enablement users can go into the details of submitted appointments, view why a request was declined, reschedule, and track another phlebotomist.
Additionally, bidirectional feedback is baked into the application. This means that patients and phlebotomists can rate the performance of one another. This is great for application feedback that can lead to application improvement as well as greater patient care.
Reducing the barriers to healthcare
Northwell sees expansion and better community care as their most significant key performance indicators. This was a reality when they saw a three-fold increase in home-based blood draws during the coronavirus crisis. At the moment, they are currently experiencing roughly 1,000 home draws per month. That number could rise with infection rates for new variants popping up across the country.
But going beyond the coronavirus pandemic and greater patient traffic, LabFly presents an entirely new workflow that could completely transform how patients receive care. For example, after a telemedicine consult, a physician can prescribe a blood draw. From here, the physician can get the results right away before prescribing a medication that is sent through the virtual care portal. All of this can be done right from the patient’s home. Adding on other hospitals and care pathways and you have an entire health system that can be controlled right from a patient’s finger tips. Welcome to the new reality in healthcare.